Wednesday, November 22, 2017

It's going to be a White Thanksgiving

No Coffee and Conversation at the library this morning.  Too many were out of town or had company for the holiday.  I took the opportunity to finally clean my 'to-go' table.  Everyone probably has one.  It's where you put things that have to go somewhere else outside of the house.  It's usually located near the door so you are more likely to notice it just before you leave.   Mine still had some empty egg cartons.  I bought eggs from the owner of Maple Hill farm who had a spot at the farmers market in town this summer.  Figured they worked w/ a small profit margin so I would return the cartons w/ their logo on them when I picked up the next dozen.  He said he also sold produce at the farm.   Thought I would find it, leave the cartons, and decide if I wanted to buy my eggs from there this winter too.  Was a fun outing and the little store at the farm was packed w/ all sorts of  other things.  I could even watch the chickens pecking around by the barn.  If no one is around they have a lock box to put money in.  I'll be coming back weekly.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Frozen leaves in the swamp

Used today to get my errands done.  I have completed all of my shopping for Thanksgiving and the rest of the week.  During yesterdays trip, Russell gave me a vivid description of what Black Friday is like in stores.  Somehow I've managed to bypass shopping on that day all of my life and it's one of those things I don't feel a burning need to experience.

Monday, November 20, 2017

It's Daylight in the Swamps

Drove into the Big City w/ Russell for his eye checkup.  Russell has a quirky sense of humor so we had a good time on the way over.  After his checkup, he agreeably consented to eating at IHOP.  I'm a sucker for their blintzes and crepes.  It was getting close to sundown as we drove home.  We hadn't noticed any hunters on the way over but saw some on the way back.    I don't know anything about hunting but I do know deer are most active at dawn and dusk.  Maybe hunters are too.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Red Oak leaf

We lost the cloud cover from yesterday so temps dropped overnight.  The pre-dawn constitutional was cold and I was just wearing a windbreaker.  I figure it's a good thing to go for these walks even in bad weather - toughens a person up (although at 65 I'm probably as tough as I'm going to get.) Anyway I was cold.  Therefore I searched the sky until I found some bright stars near the eastern horizon.  Were they stars? Oriented myself and realized they must be planets.   Mercury? Saturn? No, must be Venus and Jupiter.   Close enough to make a picture?  Not yet.   Made a mental note to check and see if they are going to come together later in the week.  Mars should be nearby.  Couldn't find it in the brightening sky.  Figured it was time to check in w/ myself.  Yes, it worked -  I was no longer freezing.  That's how you keep warm - just don't think about the cold.

Saturday, November 18, 2017

Ragnarok rocks

I won a game of 'Words with Friends'!  If you haven't played it -it's a lot like on-line Scrabble.  I eschewed Scrabble in my youth. Truthfully, I just couldn't spell well enough to figure it out.  Through the years though I've gotten better.  Merriam-Webster studies show language cognition peaks when a person  reaches the age range of 60 to 70.  In addition as people go through various stages in life they pick up more areas of knowledge (and more minutia).  My sister put out the word 'LANES'. It reminded me of something -  'TOLANES' from a chemistry book I read.  (It's a hydrocarbon).  One of us put out the word 'CODED'.  What did I do at A.C. Nielsen and Honeywell?  I 'ENCODED'.  Halloween wasn't that long ago.  I like to read Poe's 'The Raven' every year.  "Is there no 'BALM' in Gilead" is one of my favorite lines.  I enjoy mythology so I knew 'LIBER' is one of the Roman equivalencies of the Greek god Dionysus.  I gave it a try and the game took it.  Assume proper names aren't allowed so the word must have another meaning.  What I'm trying to say w/ all of this is: Beware of playing word games with people on Medicare. 

Friday, November 17, 2017

Evergreens in the mist

Knew it was suppose to rain today - but it turned out to be mostly just a heavy mist.  Our morning walk was down to the southern edge of the property, through the pines and across the field.   The afternoon walk was over to the northern edge of the property and we picked our way through the pasture along the road.   Also took our pre-dawn and post-dusk constitutionals.  Once I sit down to blog each night, Indy usually puts a paw on my arm to indicate she wants to be let out into the garage/run so she can bark at the coyotes.  Not tonight.  She's fast asleep on the window seat.  Hope she remembers the fun she had today for awhile.  Tomorrow is the beginning of gun season and our walks weill be short and boring for the next nine days.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Deer Snub

I complained on the blog earlier that the town's poll workers were referred to as 'the girls' by a county official.  My niece Becky commented 'Some people just don't get it ... Bless their Heart'.  I felt a little ashamed and told her she had given a much more charitable response than I would have.  Becky explained that wasn't exactly true.  She had lived in Tennessee and  'Bless your heart' is a southern colloquialism for 'You apparently weren't around when God handed out brains'. She informed me that in the mid-Atlantic states the response 'You're so pretty' actually means 'You are so incredibly dumb that your looks are all you have to fall back on.'  So what is the equivalent phrase in the Northwoods?  I asked the Coffee and Conversation group at the library.  Two of them replied 'Uff da' which probably comes close.  Personally I prefer  'That's interesting'.  It translates roughly to 'How fascinating that anyone could say something so stupid.'

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

More Fog

My state rep "Jimmy Boy" sent me an unsolicited e-mail about his great idea of upping the fines on people poaching larger deer.  His idea was that the bigger the distance between end tines on the antlers, the higher the fine.  I sent him back an e-mail that I thought this was unnecessarily adding red tape to law enforcement.  He left me a personal message on the phone about why we needed to 'Save our Trophy Deer'.  I still didn't agree w/ him but I was impressed that he actually addressed my concern.  When my garbage company stopped picking up recyclables (Recycling is a law in my state) I sent Jimmy Boy an e-mail asking why a garbage pickup company - that has to be certified by the state to do business -  wasn't required to offer recycling services.  It took over a week but I got a call from Jimmy Boy's assistant saying they were looking into it and expected some answers back next week.  She'd give me an update then.  Cool.  I may actually vote for 'Jimmy Boy' next time he's up for election.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Fog droplets on twigs

After seeing the doc I'm always depressed.  Not about the results - everything this time was normal or within norms or she was OK with.  It's because getting a physical requires touching.  (They don't call it a 'physical' for nothing.)  Checking your ears, looking up your nose, tongue depressor in the mouth, feeling your thyroid, putting a stethoscope on your back to hear your lungs, feeling your ankles for a pulse, taking your blood pressure.  Not a problem for most people but it's a bit much for me.  After my appointment I didn't feel like going shopping as planned.  Instead it was to the Chinese restaurant and I ordered to go my fav Mongolian Beef and vegetable fried rice.  It's also Indy's favorite since I don't actually like the beef pieces so she gets those.  Can't say that I'm out of my depression quite yet but both Indy and I are full and feeling sleepy.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Sun Pillar at Sunset

On the second walk of the day, I decided to take the cut that goes between the old and new forests.  Indy had refused to go this way w/ me all summer but once I chose the path today, she led the way.  She seemed fine - waited for me (I'm not as fast on two legs as she is on four), sniffed around here and there, and trotted along w/ her tail held high.  I still don't know what her aversion w/ the woods was this summer.   The forest was tick infested in the spring but then so was every where else.  Maybe she could smell wolves there?  Doubt that a dog who goes after bear would tremble at the thought of a wolf.  Had she been hurt in that area?  Not that I know of.  Maybe the leaf canopy made the path dark?   Could be but even if she was blind she would be able to pick out the path better than I can.  At the moment, I'm just happy that the old woods are again OK w/ her to walk through.

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Not a bear

The town's assistant clerk was pretty excited that we might be getting e-poll books and maybe even new voting machines.  She was set to send poll workers to training on the new materials well before the next election in April.  This week she sent out an e-mail stating that the board hadn't approved funding for any of it.  I was curious why so asked.  She explained the new machine is over $8,000 and w/ only around 400 registered voters the board felt we could rent another voting machines if necessary.  I can understand that plus our town would be the only one on the new software in our county.  The mantra when I worked for Honeywell was, unless there's a burning need, never be the first to install new hardware/software/upgrades/ or even 'fixes'.  That all made sense.  However I was disappointed by what the county clerk said about our poll workers, "...your township was a great one to start with the changeover as I have great confidence in you girls!"  Girls? 

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Brambles

I have a bunch of on-line teasers that I have book-marked under a "Games" heading on my computer.  Most are This-Week-In-The-News type quizzes.  I did the BBC one today.  It's only seven questions but I did incredibly bad on it - only one correct.  I do listen to the BBC news at night but it didn't seem to help me w/ the this week's test. (Did you know what Roger Federer wore at a charity tennis match this week?  It was a kilt.)   So I went to the MeTV quiz featured this week - 'Cartoon Villians from the 70's'.  That one I scored 9 correct out of 10. (Everyone knows that Dudley Do-Right was always chasing Snidley Whiplash.)    I finished my first ever game of Words-With-Friends this morning.  (My sister won big time.)  Tonight I'll work on a crossword puzzle before I go to bed.  I also bought another jigsaw puzzle at the library's 'Book and White Elephant' sale this morning.  They are all part of my coping skills as winter begins to set in.

Friday, November 10, 2017

Harrier (a/k/a Marsh Hawk)

Didn't have breakfast this morning because I went to the clinic for lab tests.  These are for my "Welcome to Medicare" checkup next week.  First a blood draw.  As usual, the tech drooled at the sight of my right arm's vein.  My little brothers tell me I must have developed such a prominent vein because I carried so many books back and forth to school.  Then off for a bone density check.  I had no idea what to expect but it turned out to be pretty simple.  Just lie down while they take an x-ray of my lower spine and pelvis.  Next, my yearly mammogram.  Must admit those techs know how to put a half-naked person at ease.  While I was maneuvered around, she spun the tale of her two dachshunds trying to decide where they wanted to pee this morning.  It was a frigid 2 degrees and the little dogs were torn between their usual searching around for that perfect place to let loose - or - getting the deed done quickly so they could go back to the warm house.  Face it, any story involving dachshunds is intrinsically funny.

Thursday, November 09, 2017

3 Pets A-Sleeping

I joined the "Friends of the Library" group (gotta remember to give them my dues).  Once a year they put on a Book & White Elephant sale so I was going to offer to help cleanup the library afterward.  That seemed it would be the easiest thing to do.  That list was filled by the time I saw it so I had to go w/ setting up for the sale.  That part seemed like it would be incredibly hard.  We would need to go through all of the book donations and put them in grouping of inspirational - children's - music - movies - books on tape - westerns - harlequins - non-fiction - and fiction by author.  Four of us started working at 3 this afternoon and finished around 5.  This was my first time but the others said usually they didn't finish in one session and had to come in again the next morning.  We've got fewer books this time so that helped and, as I said before, I had sorted many books already when I was doing my regular volunteer stints during the week.   As we went through everything, I and another worker found books we wanted so set those aside and paid for them tonight.  There are side benefits to volunteering.